On Saturday, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson did a U-turn on his promise to relax coronavirus restrictions for Christmas after warnings from scientists regarding a new, mutated form of Coronavirus that seems to have surfaced in the United Kingdom.
And it seems that Epidemiologist and Professor Neil Ferguson is - yet again - the person behind the amping up of restrictions.
Who is Professor Neil Ferguson, you ask? Well, he was a member of s Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) and was instrumental in the Johnson government's ditching the 'herd immunity' plan in favour of implementing the nationwide lockdown.
But Ferguson, a professor of mathematical biology at Imperial College London, whose determination in swaying the UK government's Covid response earned him the moniker 'Professor Lockdown', is also famous for a major mishap - the professor was caught breaking lockdown rules - the same that he had suggested for the rest of Britain, to meet his girlfriend.
Ferguson quit SAGE in May this year after the affair was revealed, stating that the incident was indeed a result of an "error in judgment". But now, it seems the hero-turned-renegade professor is back. Now that the government is set to implement Tier Four restrictions to deal with the pandemic, Professor Ferguson is back with more tough advice.
Speaking to the BBC, Ferguson said that UK may be in need of a third and even tougher lockdown to fight the spread of a "new strain" of virus that has caused panic in Britain, Daily Mail reported.
The interview came on the same day as the publication of a Nervtag report which suggested strengthening restrictions to fight the new strain of mutated covid-19 that scientists are warning against.
On Saturday, Johnson disappointed thousands of Britons who were looking forward to some relaxation of rules around the holiday season. Rules regarding household-mixing have been tightened and travel to and from several countries has been restricted.
With reports of the highly infectious new strain of coronavirus that has pushed London and southeast England under ‘stay at home’ lockdown ahead of Christmas, government in India is also assessing the situation regarding flights from the UK.